There are some brands that you don’t get excited about anymore. This could be
a good thing…. allowing you to make room for new ones or give more attention
to the ones that still tug at the heartstrings.
Your long lost lovers become precisely that. They lose their edge. Become
complacent. Turn lazy. Stop putting in. If you’re lucky, you can find them at the
discount outlets blending in with all the other discount outlet stores. Echoing the
cries of a dirty rag of desperation as they turn to the short term cash grab –
increase sales, reduce the price, reduce the quality, hit the masses.
How long can value perception carry a brand for once you stop investing in
The answer comes down to how long were you investing in the brand and/or
how long had you been running super amazing or somewhat laxed content that
either worked for or against building brand value?
Either way, what may feel like a slippy slope, can be saved. A rising from the
ashes scenario. Maybe a little extreme. Rising from the stench of the discount bin
still with the soul and confidence in tact. And actually being reasonably ok by
finding itself in the discount bin.
Some brands have done a remarkable job of ‘rising’. In the rise, they have created
new segments, in some cases, allowing to play both ends of the market.
Brands that are on the come back:
- Oroton – (Putting aside their stock market price fall due to the poor results
of Australian GAP business) they have improved their product range,
management system of new and old inventory flagship stores and
discount stores, and re-established their brand positioning and
advertising (Rose Byrne was a special touch).
- Calvin Klein – Just shows you how remarkable this brand is. Having not been touched for a while. Only needing minimal effort to get people back on board. So strong it can work all ends of the market very well and as a result can keep the door wide open for collaboration opportunities.
- Ralph Lauren – For me a little early to tell. Walking into their stores feels like you are stuck in a time warp. However it is a very strong, recognisable, and once was very well positioned brand. They can change this, and bring it back, over night.
- Dr Martens Boots – Massive in the mid 90’s. And then nothing. Now can
be found in cities near you. Just look down. They have increased their
product range to include a lot more styles and colours.
- Birkenstock – I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a correlation with the
rising style influence of Asia, on western cultures. Also the definition of
what’s cool has altered significantly. Individuality over a ‘mass produced
look’ is the new draw card. Same but different!
- Lego in the early 2003’s was nearing a cliff fall. Shifted focus to acquiring
licencing deals with the likes of Star Wars and Toy Story. The Lego Movie was also a big winner.
- Marvel – hard to go past. From something to nothing to everything.
Through shifting focus from print to movies. Which has ironically,
brought print back to life. #omnichannel
- Kmart – Was once the very poor cousin to Target. A distant memory now.
The gap is big. Kmart has double digital growth. Target is on the
double digital decline. Kmart has invested in their store network,
product enhancements, and sourcing and supply chain efficiencies.
There is a common theme here. Nostalgia and familiarity. If you are a brand that
has been around for quite a bit of time, don’t ever think it’s time to hang up the
laces. People love a comeback. It makes them feel young, loyal, gives them a
sense of belonging, an opportunity to express themselves … so many good
feelings come up.
A great brand knows how to bring back the glory days in a way that works today.
They do this through well thought through positioning, and then through every bit of
content that follows. It’s speak is ‘poetry in motion’.
Brand positioning evolution is intentional innovation. It’s not just limited to
new products it’s covers the entire scope of why, what, how of your business:
- How you position your brand today and in the future
- What you do to close the gap
- What pace you move at
- How you work your business/brand to adapt to market trends and
- How you build contingency so you future proof from having reliance on
only one stream
- How you engage with all your stakeholders not just your customers.
When brand positioning is done well it’s because its working every angle of the
This makes for good reason to not limit innovation to one area of the business.
Every area of the business should continue to innovate and evolve. All of which feeds
into the business vision.
What’s really exciting, is when you start truly working with your brand,
you uncover exponential opportunities. This comes from having a greater
understanding and an increased openness to the power of investing, creating and
leveraging your business and message through your brand.